Lucy Letby

Child Killer Lucy Letby
DOB4 Jan 1990
Kill Total7 ?
Kill PlaceChester
Kill Date2015-2016
Victimnames not given
CourtManchester Crown court
JudgeMr Justice Goss
ProsceutionNick Johnson KC
DefenceBenjamin Myers KC
Case No:

Lucy letby studied nursing at the University of Chester, where she also worked as a student nurse during her three years of training, also carrying out work placements at Liverpool Women's Hospital and the Countess of Chester Hospital. 

2012, Letby began her career as a Band-5 registered nurse at the neonatal unit of the Countess of Chester Hospital. She became a mentor to junior nurses and those in training.

April 2015, she took a further qualification which enabled her to work in the most difficult of cases, this meant she could work in neonatal intensive care.

Monday 8th June 2015, Child A, a baby boy, was born six weeks premature along with his twin sister, Child B, and was only a few days old and healthy when he was under the care of nurse Lucy Letby on the night shift. 30-minutes later child A “deteriorates rapidly”. He died within 90-minutes of Letby coming on duty. He died of air IV air embolism.

11th June 2016, Letby injects Child B with air, 28 hours after murdering her twin brother. child B survives after being resuscitated. Tests show a gas-filled bowel.

14th June 2015, Child C was born seven weeks premature weighing just 800g, but was in good condition. Letby was seen standing over his monitor as his alarm sounded, despite not being his designated nurse. He died as a result of air being injected into his tiny stomach.

22th June 2015, Lucy Letby injects air into Child D’s bloodstream, causing the baby girl to collapse three times in the early hours. Her third collapse was fatal. Those attending noticed discolouration on the baby’s skin.

2nd July 2015, head consultant on the neonatal unit, Dr Stephen Brearey, carried out a review of the three unusual deaths. Alison Kelly, the director of nursing and deputy chief executive, is told that Letby was the only nurse on shift for each of the deaths. The consultant asked for nurse letby to be placed elsewhere, his request was refused.

4th August 2015, child E was born seven weeks premature along with his twin brother, child F, and weighed just 1.4kg (3lbs). the twins mother walked in on nurse Lucy Letby trying to murder the newborn after arriving on the neonatal unit with his milk. The baby was crying, Lucy said it was OK the doctor was coming, the mother went to get her husband. When they returned they were told to say goodbye to thier baby. He died after suffering a fatal bleed believed to be the result of Letby interfering with his gastric tube.

5th August 2015, Letby laces Child F’s feeding bag with insulin less than 24 hours after murdering his twin brother. A blood sample later confirms “extremely high” insulin levels and very low C-peptide levels – proof he had been injected with insulin. The tiny child survives.

7th September 2015, the most premature of all the babies in the case, Child G was born 15 weeks early and weighed just over 450g (1lb). Lucy Letby tried to kill her three times over three weeks, the first time on the day of her 100th day alive. Child G, is severely disabled and blind as a result of the attacks.

23rd October 2015, neonatal nurse Lucy Letby killed Child I on her fourth attempt after inserting air into the baby girl’s stomach again. The baby died in his parents arms. The nurse later sent a sympathy card to Child I’s parents on the day of her funeral.

24th October 2015, neonatal consultant Dr Brearey becomes worried following the death of Child I. Yet another staffing review found that Lucy Letby was again present at more unusual deaths. Another consultant, Dr Ravi Jayaram, informed management of their concerns, but is told “not to make a fuss”.  Luicy Letby remains on the hospital neonatal unit.

October 2015, The three deaths seemed to have nothing in common. One of the deaths was also unusual as there was liver damage, like the child had been in a car crash.
Management at the hospital ignored the concerns from staff, despite there now being seven baby deaths that were unexplained.

January 2016, Letby was standing outside the room watching as a sick baby was being treated, a different consultant was concerned and again reported to management, but yet again no action.

8th February 2016, a review ordered by Dr. Brearey finds several common links in nine unusual deaths since June 2015. Lucy Letby was connected to the mortalities, and is mentioned at a meeting called to discuss the report. This was then sent to the medical director, Ian Harvey. Dr Brearey requests an “urgent” meeting with executives but no meeting takes place.

9th April 2016, nurse Letby injects insulin into a dextrose bag attached to Child L. Tests later find his insulin level “at the very top of the scale that the equipment was capable of measuring” with very low C-peptide levels – conclusive proof,  that he was poisoned with insulin. The child survived.

9th April 2016, child M, the twin brother of Child L, suffers an unexpected life-threatening collapse shortly after the insulin poisoning of his brother. His heart rate and breathing dropped dramatically and he came close to death as a result of being injected with air. He survived but suffered brain damage as a result of this attack.

April 2016, letby is moved from night shift to day shifts after consultants expressed concerns.

3rd June 2016, Lucy Letby tries to kill child N not long after he is born. The newborn boy has haemophilia, a condition causing bleeding. Letby attacked him by puching his nasogastric tube into his throat, causing trauma.

23rd June 2016, Letby murdered the first of two triplets a day after returning from annual leave. Child O had been a healthy baby and was due to go home when he collapsed unexpectedly. 
A postmortem showed a higher than normal amount of gas in his body, Letby had murdered him by injecting air into his nasogastric tube.

24th June 2016, moments after killing Child O, Letby turned to his days-old triplet brother, child P.. The nurse pumped air into the boy’s stomach via his nasogastric tube while feeding him milk at 6pm, This was just 13-minutes after his brother had died. 
It is believed the excess air shattered the little boy’s diaphragm. Doctors think he will make a full recovery but, as they ready him for another hospital, Letby says: “He’s not leaving here alive is he?” She had made a similar remark when Child C fatally collapsed a year earlier.

After the unexpected deaths of Child O and Child P. Dr Brearey phones the duty executive, Karen Rees, that evening to say that he believes Lucy Letby should be removed from the neonatal unit. Rees insists that Letby is safe to work and is happy to take responsibility if anything happened to other babies.

Several more consultants made complaints about Letby and an internal HR review was eventually started. Letby was removed from nursing and put on admin duties, 

October 2016, an internal investigation was opened and closed, and a royal college of Paediatricians investigation was also ignored, despite the fact that they called for each death to be investigated individually.
Letby took out a grievance procedure against some of the consultants. The procedure concluded that Letby had been victimised.

January 2017, a board meeting at the hospital was called, they stated there was no evidence and line would be drawn under any ongoing investigations or complaints.
The hospital management ordered the consultants who made complaints about letby to apologise to her in writing.
The consultants continued to press, and after a change in management, the police were eventually called.

The police launched Operation Hummingbird, the remit was to investigate the unexplained rise in deaths and near-fatal collapses of premature babies in the Countess of Chester Hospital's neonatal unit.

3rd July 2018, Letby was arrested at her home, led away in handcuffs, she was questioned then released on bail.

10th  June 2019, Letby arrested at home for a second time.

10th November 2020, Letby arrested for a third time. Police searched her house and found babies toys, medical notes, and scribbled notes, one saying "I am evil, I did this".
In another note letby had written, "The world is better off without me".  Letby also removed medical record from the hospital, handover notes, resuscitation notes and blood gas readings, 
After the babies deaths Letby had looked the parents up on Facebook, and almost stalked some. She would make inappropriate comments to grieving parents, and almost boast to other nurses via text message "I lost another one". She would seek condolence, and reassurance in her abilities from other staff.

November 2020, Letby was charged with murder and attempted murder against a total of 17 different babies. Letby denied all of the 22 charges against her.
Letby deliberately injected babies with air, force fed others milk and poisoned some with insulin overdoses.

10th October 2022, trial starts at Manchester Crown Court, Letby pleaded not guilty to seven counts of murder, and fifteen counts of attempted murder relating to ten babies. The babies were never named in public, they are referred to as Child A to Child Q (17).

10th July 2023, the judge sums up, and the jury retire to consider their verdicts.

Friday 18th August 2023, after 22-days of deliberation the jury returned to deliver the verdict. The jury returned several times over several days to give the verdicts. Letby was present for the first of the verdicts, and was seen to sob, she never returned to court.
Letby was in the court building on the final day, but refused to enter the dock, or even come into the courtroom.

She was found guilty of murdering seven babies, 5-boys, and 2-girls (babies A, C, D, E, I, O, P), and attempting to murder another six babies, (B, F, G,L, M, N) resulting in seven charges, as baby G had two attempts.
The jury were undecided in relation to the attempted murder charges against Baby J, K and Q. Letby was found not guilty of attempting to murder Baby H.

The UK government has ordered an independent inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the murders. The Department of Health and Social Care said the inquiry would examine "the circumstances surrounding the deaths and incidents, including how concerns raised by clinicians were dealt with".

Monday 21st August 2023, 10am, Letby was brought from prison but remained in the holding cells as she refused to enter court. The day starts with victim impact statements.
12:30pm Judge Mr Justice Goss starts hiss summing up in court number nine at Manchester Crown Court.
Sentencing, 33-year-old neonatal nurse Lucy Letby was sentenced to life for each offence, 14-life sentences, the judge giving Letby a 'whole life order', meaning she will never considered for parole, she will never be released.  Letby is now on a list of prisoners who will die behind bars, see list here >>

The sentencing was shown live on TV. See the judges sentencing remarks here >>

For the UK government,  the Justice secretary said the government wants to change the law to compel offenders to attend their sentencing.
Writing on Twitter, Alex Chalk said:
"Lucy Letby is not just a murderer but a coward, whose failure to face her victims’ families, refusing to hear their impact statements and society’s condemnation, is the final insult. We are looking to change the law so offenders can be compelled to attend sentencing hearings".

There are two unexplained child deaths at a hospital in Liverpool, where Lucy letby did her training. Investigations are ongoing.